If Your Heat Pump Is Showing Its Age, Replace It… Don’t Just Repair It
If you have a heat pump that’s over ten years old, now’s the time to start thinking about replacing it, not simply repairing it. Why? Because today’s generation of heat pumps are so efficient, they can often pay for themselves through decreased utility bills.
Heat pumps usually last from 12 to 15 years, depending on their use. They begin to show their age when major components of the system, such as the motor or compressor, start making unusual noises. Usually at this time, the service calls begin adding up as well. It’s at this point that you’ll have to decide whether to repair the old system or replace it with a new one.
In the short run, replacing a major component costs less than replacing the entire system. In the long run, however, you may be missing an opportunity to greatly improve the overall efficiency of your system and save significant amounts of money in operating costs. In recent years, heat pump manufacturers like Trane have made dramatic progress in increasing the efficiency of their units. As a result, it may make more economic sense to invest the money spent on repairs in a new, more efficient unit that will immediately lower operating costs. Eventually, the more efficient unit should pay for itself. In the meantime, you’ll gain the added benefits of greater reliability and longer warranty protection.
When looking at a new system, remember that the efficiency of a heat pump is indicated by two ratings, one for heating and one for cooling. The heating rating is called the Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF), and the cooling rating is called the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). In both cases, the higher the number, the greater the efficiency and the lower the operating costs.
In order to attain the rated efficiency of the new system, it’s important to replace both the outdoor unit (which includes the compressor) and the indoor unit (which includes the blower and evaporator) at the same time. Combining a new high efficiency outdoor unit with an old low efficiency indoor unit will probably not result in optimum performance. It’s also important to select the correct size unit for your home. After a thorough inspection, we can determine how much capacity is required to keep your home comfortable.
Following installation of the new system, we offer service contracts that cover periodic maintenance of equipment and, if needed, repairs. Ask us about these preventative maintenance programs that will help prolong the life of your investment.